Kenosha, WI asked in Real Estate Law for Utah

Q: In Utah, does a deed have to be recorded in order to be effective?

If an executed deed is not recorded, the deed transfer is still effective, correct?

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1 Lawyer Answer
Kenneth Prigmore
Kenneth Prigmore
  • Spanish Fork, UT
  • Licensed in Utah

A: When you pay money for a piece of property, then you do have a claim against the person that sold you the property. But, the intended effect of a deed is to transfer ownership on official records. Until the deed is recorded, the transfer has not occurred in the eyes of the county and the state.

Quit Claim Deeds only give away what you currently own. I could give you a Quit Claim Deed for the Brooklyn Bridge, but you would get nothing, even when you recorded the deed, because I didn't own anything in the first place. A Warranty deed promises that I own the property I am deeding you.

If someone signs two Quit Claim Deeds to different people for the same piece of property, the first one to record will own the property. The second will get nothing.

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